Ducks -winter feeding and fatties vs skinnies

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by carolynm, Mar 5, 2015.

  1. carolynm

    carolynm Songster

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    Apr 5, 2011
    Bailey, CO
    Ok I believe I have a problem. I lost my favorite drake today- I think the cold got to him because he was thin. My other drake is disgustingly fat. Last week I lost my youngest duck.

    I believe I have some really heavy ducks that are over eating and leaving not enough for the smaller less pushy ducks.

    My ducks have always been pigs cleaning up whatever food I put out for them. Last fall I really wanted to get them switched to free feeding so I just fed them as much as they could eat until they wouldn't clean it up. A couple of them ate until the point they could hardly move so that didn't work-especially since I use my ducks for herding! So I went back to feeding them rations.

    I currently feed approx 2# of fodder a day plus 1# of layer plus kitchen scraps -but if one duck eats 1/3 or 1/2 of the rations the others may not get enough! Any suggestions on switching these ducks to a free feeding program without a couple killing themselves from engorgement? I plan on getting more ducks this spring and definitely want a free freeding program.
     
  2. Amiga

    Amiga Overrun with Runners 8 Years

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    Jan 3, 2010
    Southern New England
    Well, that's a tough nut to crack. Very sad for your loss.

    Since the generic approaches aren't working - I mean, either feeding them all all the time or rationing them all, and it may have to do with pushy behavior, I wonder if you need to have a split feeding pen. Like the concept of cribs where lambs can get in and feed but the bigger sheep cannot… Just a temporary divider fence where the pushies are on one side and the skinnies are on the other for the feeding period. You could even add a little extra high-nutrient higher-calorie material to help the others keep on some good weight.
     

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